Friday, April 18, 2014

9:09 PM
It is no secret that this month of my Fitness Project I am supposed to be focused on cycling. As I mapped out my workouts for the week I had grand plans of spending my Friday morning mountain biking on one of my favorite local trails - sneaking a ride in between day care drop off and kindergarten volunteering. That idea kept me going as I squeezed in uninspiring but efficient cycling workouts in my garage Monday, Tuesday and Thursday evenings and otherwise managed through my week.

Imagine my surprise when I saw the hand written note posted above the sign out sheet at my son's day care on Thursday evening - KL Will Be Closed Friday April 18th (ostensibly for Good Friday). This sudden news was certainly going to put a wrench in my good Friday. 

It is not that I don't love spending time with my kids. I really do. 

It is just that I also love NOT spending time with them. 

There are a handful of sacrosanct hours each week that I claim as my own and to see them get pried away by short notice day care closures (Friday), toddler birthday parties (Saturday), and other life detritus (Sunday = Easter) is sometimes very, very painful.

First world problems, I know.

And to be honest, the oh man, I lost my Friday morning! disappointment didn't last long. Here is why... 

For the last few months I have been on a quiet mission to unseat my husband as my son's by-far-and-away favorite, a title he has held for about a year now (almost directly correlated to when I stopped breastfeeding). Not by bribery or other subversive acts (although they have been considered), and not by masochistically volunteering to be first responder to the many midnight and all 6 AM wakings (I did for that long enough), but simply by making a conscious effort to have more "moments" with my son.

These moments are not big. They are not spectacular - they are just me taking time, consciously, to be fully present with my son - to show him with small and meaningful actions that he means the world to me, all sticky, kicky bits of him. To give him the sort of full and undivided attention that comes more rarely to a second child. These moments look like:

Me sitting in my underwear and Tshirt on the living room rug drinking coffee and playing legos with him in the morning instead of rushing around getting ready, just because.
Me planning ahead enough so that I could take him on a short skuut around the neighborhood after I picked him up from day care..and stopping to literally smell every flower with him...and doing the loop one more time, just because.
Me taking the long way to day care so we could follow the concrete truck, just because.
Me reading one more book with him at night, after his sister left the room, just because.

Today it looked like doing a stroller run instead of an epic bike ride and parking my stroller halfway through our run so that we could "hike" a short, spur trail together through the woods:

For him this was a new place and an amazing adventure - hills to run down, flowers to smell, logs to balance on and jump off. For me it was precious one on one time spent with a precious little soul. 

He ran hard for 3/4 of a mile and then asked me to hold him. As I picked him up to carry him the rest of the way back to the stroller he smiled widely and hugged me close. 

Good Friday indeed.

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